“This new [BlackBerry 10] platform has been in the works for years, an incredibly long development cycle in an industry known for rapid shifts and cutthroat competition,” Evan Niu reports for The Motley Fool. “RIM acquired QNX Software in April 2010, and management outlined its new platform that would be built on QNX in fiscal Q1 2011.”

“BlackBerry 10 has seen numerous development delays over the years, and the Z10 won’t be available in the important U.S. market until March (assuming there are no additional delays). That’s 21 months from when then co-CEO Mike Lazaridis first discussed the platform transition to when it will actually be available to U.S. consumers,” Niu reports. “Apple is rumored to be moving iPhone launches back to summer time frames and could potentially unveil an iPhone 5S and lower-cost iPhone as early as May.”

Niu reports, “Pricing may have also disappointed investors, as RIM is hoping to position the Z10 at the high-end of the market. The Z10 will retail for $200 on contract, and $600 unsubsidized, which are relatively standard price points for flagship devices. However, Apple still dominates the high-end smartphone market, comprising 74% of smartphone activations at AT&T and Verizon combined in the fourth quarter… The BlackBerry Z10 is going to go head-to-head with the cream of the smartphone crop in both pricing and availability, all at a time when RIM should be trying to steer clear of fights that it can’t win.”

Read more in the full article here.

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